Newest Review: ... to allow you to put your full weight on the scooter as you travel along. At the front of the scooter you have the adjustable handl... more
Light weight, portable and stands the test of time.
Micro Skate Scooter
Member Name: Randal
Micro Skate Scooter
Advantages: Lightweight and well designed.
Cleaning out the garage recently, I came across this Micro Scooter that my kids used to use on and off over the years, I remember buying it for my daughter from Toys R'Us many years ago because she was going through the whole thing of roller skates at the time, and I thought that this Micro Scooter would fit right in with that theme, and yes, she loved it. At the time (and I'm thinking around 2002) it cost me in the region of about £50, and for that money, you did get quite a novel contraption.
The overall design sort of took the typical girl's Barbie or boy's Ninja Turtle Scooter of the day, with the big wheels and big frame, and tried to produce a smaller, more sleeker version that was all shiny silver and chrome and more aimed at a unisex market. There were, and still are many variations of this Micro Scooter on the retail market, but they all tended to follow the same design. The frame is made out of aluminium for light weight and strength, and the wheels were reduced in size from something like 6" in diameter with a wide tyre fitted, down to 4" diameter running on a solid rubber/nylon wheel, which was very narrow to reduce the rolling resistance. You still have the metal base plate that you stand on, which is 4" wide and about 13" long with a grip strip in the middle, and it is also designed with strengthening plates underneath to allow you to put your full weight on the scooter as you travel along.
At the front of the scooter you have the adjustable handlebars which take the height of the scooter up to 36" and are nicely finished off with padded handles, and the whole ensemble is completed with a few additional nice little touches. At the back, you have a nice little chrome mudguard which also doubles as a brake which can be pressed onto the wheel, and on the front wheel, they have tried to set up a suspension system with matching springs either side of the front wheel on a pivot mechanism supporting the front wheel.
In use, you can zip along quite smartly on it, and I know my kids used to love running up and down the drive on it. With the small hard wheels, the ride can be fairly bumpy over rough ground, because whereas larger wheels would ride over most obstacles and stones, the smaller wheels will hit everything and not easily ride over anything. So the scooter is better off being used on a flatter surface such as a driveway or a pavement.
But where there Micro Scooter really comes into its own is that it is all completely collapsible. For starters, the handlebars were adjustable in height from about 27" up to the 36" full height, where you could lock them at any height in between using the quick release collar around the main stem. The actual handles at the top are fitted with quick release press pins, where they can be disconnected from the main head very easily. So to collapse the scooter down, you first disconnect the handles at the top. Conveniently, the handles are held together with a piece of elastic between them so that they cannot be removed (and lost) from the scooter. To ensure safe storage, just below the head is a double sided plastic clip into which you clip the handles so that they are stored parallel to the main stem.
Next, using the quick release collar, collapse the handlebars down to their lowest setting. Now, just behind the front wheel on the base plate, there is another locking quick release spring loaded pin/bolt. Releasing this then allows you to fold the handlebar/front shaft assembly back onto the base plate. The release pin/bolt then automatically snaps back into position to lock everything in the collapsed position. So you now have an assembly that is about 6" high, by 4" wide and 27" long, which only weights about 2.5kgs. As an added bonus, the scooter also came with a detachable shoulder strap which could be clipped on, allowing you to carry it around either in your hand or over your shoulder.
At the time when I bought this, I seem to remember poster ads selling these that were more aimed at the city worker. The sleek chrome styling aimed it more at the adult market, and once set up, the idea was that the worker could 'commute' and get around the city very quickly on this scooter. But with the added bonus of being completely collapsible, the worker could fold it up and easily carry it around, thereby taking it into the office or wherever with them. I don't seem to recall seeing many city workers zipping around on these scooters, so I don't expect that the idea ever caught on and hence, the micro scooter stayed with the children's market.
A final thing worth pointing out is the longevity and durability of the design. My particular scooter is now about 9 years old and has been extensively played with by my kids throughout the years, and then been knocking around the garage for the last few years. And when I recently re-discovered it, the first thing we all did was to fold it all out and have a go on it again down the drive. Everything still worked. The wheel bearings were still running smooth nothing, had seized and it was all still shiny and bright. So it seems to have lasted the test of time.
In summary, there have been numerous variations of this micro scooter on the market throughout the years, each perhaps slightly changing the design with some new added feature, but all based around the same concept of being collapsible, portable and light weight. But even though they are small, they are tough little things that will carry the weight of an adult with ease. So if you want to get a scooter for your kids that will be around for years to come, you can't go wrong with this one. Highly recommended.
Summary: A design that will last for years to come.